William Walker Atkinson wrote Thought Vibration or the Law of Attraction in the Thought World in 1906. His publication supported his idea for a law of attraction. What we think manifests in our reality. Thoughts attract like things according to Atkinson. Evidence is lacking to support his claims but it hasn't stopped people from believing in the power of his law.
The harder we try the less we shall succeed. This is the most simple way to explain the law of reversed effort. The 'backwards law' is talked about by two influential philosophers, Aldous Huxley and Alan Watts. These two philosophers took notice to the phenomenon that occurs when conscious will is applied to achieve results. If one is to apply more conscious effort in hopes of increased results, he will run into diminishing returns for his effort. More effort does not equate to better results.